Autism-Related Articles, Books, Services

Saturday, November 3, 2007

audubon

Tom has always been a wonderful patron of the arts. He learned the Philadelphia Museum of Art by heart, with his favorite rooms being the Asian Art galleries, Contemporary galleries, and - not surprisingly - the museum shop! He has a real interest in cubism, and can identify Krishna, Buddha and Ganesh anywhere!

Unfortunately, school art classes didn't do much for Tom. He enjoyed the little crafts, but they were specifically designed to avoid any creative input... and he has relatively poor drawing skills. He showed an interest in building, and we tried giving him legos, Kn'ex, and other building toys - but he has rarely used them to build.

Instead, he squirrels them away in his pockets along with other bits of junk. Then, he creates "sculptures" by attaching these bits of junk to one another with various bits of string, wire and ribbon.

We wanted to find a way to encourage his interest in art and sculpture and and at the same time channel his "thing collecting" so that we could minimize the piles of pen caps, bottle lids and other paraphernalia with which he's filled his drawers.

We started by buying a cabinet with many little drawers, and labeling each drawer with a different color. He now has a place to store his junk. Then, we worked together to come up with some specific art projects that could incorporate the junk. Our first effort, based on a piece of art at the Heritage Plantation in Sandwich, MA, looks like this:


We're now working on decorating at Atat (Star Wars walker) which Tom and his dad built from cardboard tubes (we have a ton of these!). Tom has some very large projects in mind - and the Great Garden Railway, I hope, will give him a terrific outlet.
Meanwhile, I am hoping to work together with members of the local homeschool community to put together a homeschool (and siblings) art show for the winter months. With luck, Tom's sculptures will get a little interest and recognition. And - who knows? Maybe a local gallery will take him on LOL!

2 comments:

The Glasers said...

I love Tommy's flag!!!! That is very creative. I do not care for those pre-made, no-brainer crafts, too.

Lisa Jo Rudy said...

Actually, we kinda ripped it off from another artist... but it's really pretty cool!